My husband and I went backpacking in Europe with my sister and her husband, and *sigh* it was so dreamy. I want to go back already, haha. People asked, “Did you take with your daughter with you??” Oh heavens no, thank goodness.
But, that was the only hard part of this trip… leaving my daughter behind with my parents. It broke my heart seeing her cry as I walked away towards the airport to get on the plane to Paris.
I shed few tears, but I was okay after that because I knew she was in good hands. She has wonderful grandparents who took such good care of her. So that helped.
Another thing that was helpful was that I gathered important and helpful information beforehand. It made my daughter stay at my parents’ house a pleasant experience for her and my parents. In this post, I shared some tips to help the time away from your kids more enjoyable for your kids, you, and the grownups taking care of your kids.
Things to do to give you a peace of mind while you’re away
1. Write down important information
This great free printable is a great guideline of what information you should leave with the caretakers. Like your phone numbers, your children’s health care providers phone numbers, a list of medication, allergies, and diagnoses for each child. Get this free printable so that medical decisions can be made in the event of an emergency when you and spouse are not available.
2. Make copies of important documents
Leave copies of your insurance cards, driver licenses, and passports. Just in case if yours got lost, especially if traveling abroad.
3. Create a schedule
So that the folks who are providing care and your child know exactly what to expect each day. Include the times of events and activities along with the address of locations so they can find their way. Also, include the morning and evening routines.
4. Provide a “favorites” list
Favorite food, activities, toys, comforts, tv shows, pacifiers, games, etc. etc. Anything that will help your kids and care providers to have a good day together.
5. Schedule a time to call or FaceTime
This was difficult for us because when we were in Europe, which was 8 hours time difference. So whenever we were back to our AirBnb for the night, it was my daughter’s nap time. Also, first couple days were rough for my daughter being away from Mommy and Daddy so FaceTime didn’t really help. She got used to the idea of us being away in 3 days so FaceTiming her after that was much better.
6. Make each day special
Leave a note or surprise for your children each day you’re away. For example, you can give them cash to spend on ice cream with the caretaker that day. Or a permission to download a new app.
We did not do this with my daughter, but I thought this was a good idea. We would do this next time and when she’s older.
7. Hide Post-Its throughout the house.
I did not do this either, but I will when my child is older. This is a cute idea because the kids love finding surprises and reading love words from Mommy and Daddy.
8. Print a calendar and note when you are leaving and returning.
This will help your child visualize when you will be home. At the end of each day, they can mark off the day.
Once again, we did not do this, but this is a great thing to do with older kids who understand time.
9. Leave a new toy for them to play with.
Kids always get excited to play with a new toy, right? Yes, give them a gift. You get to spend money on your travels so at least spend a little bit on your kids too. 🙂
10. Return with a souvenir
Growing up, my dad traveled all over the world for his work so I loooooved when he returned with a gift.
We brought back our daughter a Switzerland doll. 🙂
I hope these tips will help you to prepare for your trips and give your peace of mind leaving your kids behind.